Yesterday I took a step back in time to a period of European splendor and visited North America’s only full-sized castle, Casa Loma. Considered one of the grandest residential buildings ever constructed in Canada, it has 98 rooms, opulent bathrooms, secret passageways, an 800-foot tunnel, beautiful gardens, and much more. Not surprisingly, Casa Loma is a popular filming location for movies and TV shows.
Friday was a perfect weather day here in Toronto, so my boss gave me the afternoon off. I took a ferry to the Toronto Islands, a chain of 15 small islands on Lake Ontario just offshore from mainland Toronto—with amazing views of the Toronto skyline.
I’m no longer in the United States! After spending the summer in Minnesota—and taking a hiatus from posting here—I left last Thursday for Toronto, Ontario where I’m living this month. It was another whirlwind two-day journey across four states and one province. I’m really enjoying Toronto so far and have unexpectedly spent a lot of time staring in awe at airplanes in the sky.
ONE YEAR! I’ve been traveling as a digital nomad for a full year. When I decided to get lost on purpose in early 2022, I never could have imagined all the amazing places I’d go and the adventures I’d have in a year. I’ve been in 14 states and Canada this past year and stayed for a month or longer in 7 places.
The past year of my life might honestly be the best one yet. It still doesn’t seem real. I’m so proud of myself. Solo travel has forced me to grow as a person in countless ways. I feel there’s nothing I can’t tackle. By being vulnerable and facing fears as I travel on my own to new cities—learning new habits and about different cultures and communities—I know it will help me face other challenges in life.
This month I’m enjoying springtime in Tulsa, Oklahoma. After ten weeks in Texas, I’m slowly heading back north. By the time I left Texas, it looked and felt like summer. Now that I’m a little further north, I’m experiencing the spring bloom again in Tulsa. I’ve mostly been laying low in my apartment and neighborhood a few blocks from the Arkansas River and the amazing Gathering Place park.
I’m overdue for an update! The last time I wrote I was contemplating buying a Stetson hat and a pair of $350 boots from Allens Boots in Austin. Well, I bought both… along with three pairs of Wrangler jeans, three western shirts, socks, a boot jack, a matching belt, and an M buckle. Yeehaw! I’m having a great time living in San Antonio this month. My mom and aunt visited a couple of weekends ago and we had so much fun. Read on for more about life in San Antonio so far.
It’s been a wonderful month of no snow, warm temps, BBQ brisket sandwiches, amazing tacos, Mexican Cokes, live music, murals galore, and exploring this wonderfully diverse capital of Texas.
I’m in the great state of Texas! For the next six weeks, I’m calling Austin home. I’ve only been here a few days and am already loving it, mostly because there’s no snow, near-constant sunshine, and high temps near 65 degrees. I can finally check “become a snowbird” off my bucket list! Like my trip out west last year, I drove here on one road. They say it’s more about the journey than the destination, and the 3-day journey down I-35 was quite fun! Here are the highlights.
I’ve been laying low at my parents’ house in Saint Paul since early November—busy with awesome work projects and enjoying lots of family time—but I can’t stand the snow anymore. So, I’ve embarked on my next multiple-month adventure. The snow is already in my rearview, and I arrive at my destination tomorrow.
I’m back in Minnesota after an amazing three months in the Pacific Northwest. It’s been great to see family and friends again, but I’ve been doing a lot of reminiscing about my trip—including random observations. For example: believe it or not, grocery prices in Minnesota are higher than in any of the places I’ve been—even Seattle.